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Remi Rajotte Humanities 181 Paper on the Plague If you can imagine all your family and friends falling ill to an unexplainable disease They awake one morning as healthy as ever and by nightfall they are deathly ill They all show similar symptoms which include a high fever and painful swellings about the size of an egg in their armpit or groin area These swellings ooze blood and pus All of the inflicteds excrements vomit blood urine sweat smell unimaginably bad Within five days all of your loved ones are dead Imagine also that all of your neighbors have also succumbed to this terrible disease If you were able to imagine this situation as part of your experience you have entered the mindset of a 14th century European during the period of the Black Death The second major outbreak of bubonic plague known as the Black Death occurred in Europe in 1346-50 The plague was believed to have originated in China and brought to Europe on trading ships Specifically it entered Europe on twelve Italian trading ships that docked in Sicily in October 1347 carrying a cargo of men dying or dead from the plague Once the plague entered the port it was virtually unstoppable One eyewitness account reads Realizing what deadly disaster had come to them the people quickly drove the Italians from their city But the disease remained and soon death was everywhere Within days the disease spread to the city and the surrounding countryside and eventually all over Europe This was the commencement of the many years of death and destruction that the plague would bestow on Europe In winter the disease seemed to disappear but only because fleas which were helping carry the plague were dormant then Each spring the plague attacked again killing new victims After five years 25 million people were dead one-third of Europes population Smaller outbreaks continued for several
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